Current Exhibition

Developing an Image:

Photography, Books, and the National Park Service, from the Collection of Robert Bothamley

August 8 – December 5, 2016

Founded one hundred years ago, on August 25, 1916, the National Park Service is an American invention that was developed gradually over time. As our nation expanded to the West and the beauties of its natural wonders were experienced for the first time, people generally felt one of two emotions: a desire to preserve this wilderness for future generations to enjoy, or to exploit it for financial gain. From the beginning, those on the side of preservation and protection made significant use of books, periodicals, and, in particular, photography to generate support for their cause. The exhibition will include a sampling of the publications and photographs that, together, played an important role in making a general public aware of the need to preserve our natural wonders and established support for this new government agency, the National Park Service, to protect and manage these precious resources.

From Lafayette H. Bunnell’s firsthand description of the Mariposa Battalion’s encounter with the Yosemite Valley in 1851, through the lyrical photography of Ansel Adams, Developing an Image includes a sampling of the publications and photographs that, together, played an important role in making a general public aware of the need to preserve our natural wonders, and established support for this new government agency, the National Park Service, to protect and manage these precious resources.

Born in Newport Beach, Robert Bothamley spent his early childhood in Orange County, California. His grandfather, Herbert Rankin, was a successful businessman and an avid amateur photographer. As an early member of the Sierra Club, Herbert participated in the annual high trips with Ansel Adams, photographing the magnificent scenery of our state’s wildlands. From his grandfather, Bob developed a love for our national parks and an appreciation of photography, especially, the work of Ansel Adams. Bob’s initial collecting interests included works by Ansel Adams, early photography, and books illustrated with original photographs.

Bob’s family moved to Guadalajara, Mexico, where he spent his adolescent years. He was taught by the Jesuits at the Instituto de Ciencias where he graduated with a degree in engineering. Fluent in Spanish, his experience in Mexico fostered an interest in the Spanish/Mexican heritage of California which is another of his collecting interests. Returning to California, Bob attended Occidental College where he received a degree in economics and later received an MBA from UCLA. Bob is currently a principal of Daum Commercial Real Estate Services where he serves as the company’s Secretary and Chief Financial Officer. Bob’s family includes three wonderful adult children and one adorable granddaughter who, at 20 months, definitely shares his love of books.

Click here for more information about the opening reception on August 8.

 

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